Editorial: Carrying the college drinking mindset into life is detrimental

Binge drinking is on the rise and becoming a big issue for college students both past and present.

Research shows that people who are of the same age as college students, but do not attend college, are less likely to be binge drinkers, and the number of incidences of binge drinking in that age range has dropped immensely, according to the New York Times.

What is it about college students that makes them more prone to binge drinking?

Binge drinking is five drinks for men and four drinks for women in a two hour time period, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

On paper that does not sound like a lot, but when one is having a good time with friends, it is quite easy to lose track of how many and just keep going.

The problem is that binge drinking parties of college are catching up to us later on in life. The ages of binge drinkers have been slowly creeping from 18-26 to 18-34.

“While binge drinking is more common among young adults aged 18–34 years, binge drinkers aged 65 years and older report binge drinking more often—an average of five to six times a month,” according to the CDC.

A study conducted by the Alzheimer’s society showed that those who reported binge drinking at least twice a month were more than twice as likely to experience a higher level of cognitive decline in adults ages 65 and older.

This shows that the effects of binge drinking will carry over into our futures.

Binge drinking raises alcohol dependence. When alcohol is consumed the liver converts the drug into a chemical called acetate into the brain, which is used as fuel, according to a study by Yale School of Medicine Researchers.

The body naturally has very little acetate, so binge drinking hooks the brain on the extra acetate and becomes addicted. This has been shown to encourage alcohol dependence and even cause people to show signs of withdrawal, according to Yale’s study.

Seventy percent of people who develop alcohol dependence have a single episode that lasts on average three or four years, according to the National Institutes on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism study on alcohol and it’s related conditions.

Binge drinking has been linked to many cases of alcoholism as well as many other health problems, including birth defects and liver disease, according to the CDC.

In fact, according the the CDC, “More than 38 million US adults binge drink about 4 times a month, and the largest number of drinks per binge is on average 8. This behavior greatly increases the chances of getting hurt or hurting others due to car crashes, violence, and suicide. Drinking too much, including binge drinking, causes 80,000 deaths in the US each year and, in 2006 cost the economy $223.5 billion.”

The phrase “please drink responsibly” is on every alcoholic beverage label and in every commercial that encourages the purchase of alcohol and it is there for a reason.

Everything in moderation is good advice to follow in drinking situations and allows you to prevent binge drinking from destroying your life.